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Instructable First timer - I always was impressed with the engineering of the Playmate cooler and how its put together so I decided to add a great addition - A working car stereo and speakers, all of which still allow the cooler to function

Parts list
12v car stereo with mp3 input -Dual brand is cheap on Amazon 45 bucks
RV overhead stereo mount plate - amazon 14 bucks
surface mount speakers - Jenson or Pioneer or other made for car to be rugged
12v 7amp hr gell cell batteries - any surplus site or emergency lighting distributor -20 bucks or so ea
junction box 2x1x2 -electrical supply house or telephone jack housing
rubber antenna - auto part store
wire 18 awg assorted colors
2 inch plastic pipe u clamps for emt - Home depot .50 ea
2 drawer pulls or computer rack handles and spacers made from scrap pipe
toggle switch or rocker switch
dc power jack - any easy combo
12v lead acid battery charger or trickle charger - found at radio shack
2 feet wire loom tubing 1/2 inch diameter - radio shack or auto parts store

Step 1: Construction

first remove plugs on side of cooler - they pop out to reveal the Phillips screws that hold the tilting cover on, once these screws are removed then set aside.

cooler top then is easily removed - grab a empty beer case to use as a temporary stand

next step is mount any quality pair of speakers to side using counter sunk hardware if possible to not cause interference when opening and closing - (depending on speakers chosen, using predrilled wood screws would do) see pic for location and far forward the front the better to leave enough room for the Batteries

Step 2: Mounting Batteries

next step is to attach collar to hold batteries, this is a bit tricky to hold while marking - the battery needs to be located as shown and the u collar will be at the bottom of the cooler side to support the weight of the gel cell

mount with countersunk stainless hardware then while holding battery in position place "draw pull" across battery at angle to hold then mark location for holes in cover

secure batteries with 10-24 "long" screws about 2 inches at same time measure spacing for tubing - this will hold the batteries secure
cut tubing and slide on screws then slide battery in place



Step 3: Wiring

next step is to feed wires through top cover to get power and speaker leads mounted

drill a 1/4 hole through cover and make sure it does not interfere with hinge mechanism on left side

if top cover has insulation as mine did furrow out a 1/2 inch trench along top as shown to conceal wires, feed a 4 conductor 18 gauge 3 foot piece of wire through and hold in place with tape or glue - leave enough slack to trim wires, black and red for power and in my case the other 2 colors were green and white for speaker

drill hole on other side and feed wire out, remove any slack

looking at front right side I will make a junction for all the wiring to come together - this can be any small box and needs to have plug of sorts to match the battery charger you will use

next step will be to unpack radio and slide into RV tray, dry fit all parts first, locate rubber antennae about 1/2 way up on tray as shown in main pic then bundle coax and fit tight into tray

power leads for the 12v radio need to be switched on and off - this will require a simple toggle switch to be located somewhere on side of RV box maybe on right side ? , I will not go into details of this but is basic and shown on factory diagram attached

* one side note is that usually there is a constant power lead and a separate "ignition" lead to turn radio on and off - my suggestion would be to wire the toggle to the ignition lead so to be able to save radio settings without losing them every time you turn it off

measure and cut a piece of the 1/2 inch loom tubing to route radio wires to speakers and batteries - exit out right side of tray near bottom and over and up behind the speaker to junction box near top



Step 4: Wiring Continued

now route 6 wires through tubing to radio tray and connect as follows - suggested colors any other will do
* 2 wires for right speaker ( red black)
* 2 wires for left speaker ( green white)
* 2 wires for battery power ( blue green)
connect up the stereo and tuck wires in tray
cut small 1/4 inch hole half way up tubing to exit right side speaker wires and continue with remaining wires up to 2x2 junction box

add receptacle jack that matches whatever battery charger leads you have, I made a dual plug for other applications

next drill hole through back of 2x2 box and feed wire from cover into box and combine the speaker leads for left side and also attach left side power leads for battery - its a mess I know but it will fit inside

mount box to right side of cooler and give care to clearance to slide battery in and out

Step 5: Final Steps

wire speakers as any car stereo - right and left then add .250 stake-on terminals to the batteries and tuck slack in and out of way

lastly power up the stereo and make sure all works ok then mount RV tray with stereo in center of cooler with shallow stainless screws, One more addition is I wired white leds mounted through the cooler from radio side and epoxied in so at night the interior is lit when stereo is on

charge batteries with trickle charger and even though its heavy its worth it ...good Luck

-Scott A

Step 6: 1 Year Later ....few Updates ...still Going Great

I added Lithium-ion batteries instead of heavy lead acid for 23 bucks each on Amazon ..works great but the drop off when batteries go dead erases memory on radio settings - will need to be more careful not to let drain too far

also added tablet and can watch 80's metal videos and classic comedies compressed to mp4

<p>how long will the battery charge last on this?</p>
<p>Hi there- the gell cells are 7 amp/hr each so after a 4hr charge or so the radio should last 14hrs at good volume, the batteries I got for free because they were old but so far I have left it on outside all day a few times and seems to never run out..if I had money I would get the lithium ion pack on amazon thats 14 amp/hr and weighs only 1.5lb @$80.00 </p>

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